Updated at noon to correct the proposition names. Button up for your civic responsibility, Denton. There are some big decisions to make for our collective future.
The state of Texas has 10 constitutional amendments for every Texas voter to consider. And Denton residents have an extra reason to head to the polls: a $221.5 million bond election to pay for roads, police department needs, parkland and public art.
Proposition A allocates $154 million to road improvements, with $70 million of that going to city streets in three neighborhoods that need a leg up: around Denton High School in central Denton, around Ginnings Elementary School in eastern Denton and in Southeast Denton.
The remaining amount will go to widen major arterials and accommodate a growing city, including Bonnie Brae Street in western Denton and Ryan Road and Hickory Creek Road in southern Denton.
In the case of Hickory Creek Road, one portion will be reengineered to eliminate a dangerous s-curve in the road. Motorists ended up in the creek in four of seven serious wrecks on that road in the past two years. University of North Texas student Lucas Tucker, 24, drowned Jan. 21, 2018. Nearly a year later, brothers Daniel, 14, and Diego Rivera, 17, died when their SUV rolled into the creek on Jan. 9, 2019.
Proposition B allocates $61.9 million to renovate the Denton Police Department’s current building on East Hickory Street, to build a new police substation on the south side of town and to build a new, indoor firing range.
Proposition C allocates $5 million for the city to purchase open space for parks.
Proposition D allocates $619,000 for public art, or 1% of Proposition A. Longstanding policies by the City Council require the city to allocate some portion of general obligation bond spending to public art. The separate proposition empowers the Public Art Committee to recommend projects that could be installed in other places besides the firing range or the police department, which is already home to significant pieces.
Early voting continues daily through Nov. 1, with extended hours on Saturday, Oct. 26 and during the second week of early voting at 24 locations around the county.
During early voting, voters may cast a ballot at any early voting location, whether close to home or the workplace.
Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 5. More information on the election administration can be found at votedenton.com.